Phil Taylor was dumped out of the Walk-On World Cup by Wayne Mardle on Sunday evening, as the Dutch duo of Raymond van Barneveld and Michael van Gerwen safely progressed to the last 16.
Amid the sporting hiatus caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, the PDC devised their Walk-On World Cup competition account on Friday, encouraging fans to determine who has the best entrance in world darts.
The tournament features current stars and former professionals, with fans encouraged to cast their votes via a series of social media polls. Unibet are offering an outright market under their ‘Odds Boost’ section on site, and all profits will be donated to Parkinson’s UK charity.
Taylor was the initial tournament favourite, but the 16-time world champion was beaten by the ever-popular Mardle in the second round, in a repeat of their titanic World Championship quarter-final clash in 2008.
‘The Power’ dominated the pair’s head-to-head-record during their playing days, winning 29 of their 32 competitive meetings. However, Mardle secured the bragging rights on this occasion, as his iconic ‘Hawaii Five-0’ walk-on claimed 54% of the 8,132 votes.
However, Taylor’s old foe Van Barneveld had no such problems, as he breezed through to round three at the expense of Mensur Suljovic. Having eased past Adrian Lewis on Saturday, the five-time world champion saw off Suljovic’s ‘Simply The Best’ entrance with a whopping 79% of the votes.
Elsewhere, Van Gerwen defeated the legendary John Part in a battle of the three-time world champions, whilst Gary Anderson was the most emphatic second round winner, thrashing Jeffrey de Zwaan with his crowd-pleasing ‘Jump Around’ walk-on.
For the second consecutive round, world champion Peter Wright survived a scare, edging past his fellow countryman John Henderson. ‘The Highlander’ was ‘Rockin’ All Over the World’ with Status Quo in the Premier League in Aberdeen, although he was unable to stop Snakebite’s party in the last 32.
Daryl Gurney’s ‘Sweet Caroline’ entrance is always a hit with the darting crowds and he was a comprehensive victor against world number three Gerwyn Price, whilst South African World Cup star Devon Petersen overcame Ricky Evans and his YMCA entrance in a high-quality clash.
Vincent van der Voort’s tune by KC and the Sunshine Band saw him progress to the last 16 at the expense of three-time BDO world champion Glen Durrant, as Simon Whitlock’s legion of fans led him to victory over Development Tour star Ted Evetts.
Dave Chisnall left Ian White feeling dizzy after overcoming ‘The Diamond’ in the second round, whilst Steve West has stopped believing after losing out to Max Hopp’s entrance of ‘Hey Baby’ by DJ Otzi.
Former World Championship finalist Michael Smith will face Mardle in the last 16 after narrowly seeing off Kim Huybrechts. The Belgian’s entrance of ‘Hi Ho Silver Lining’ wasn’t enough to defeat Smith, as two-time PDC major winner Robert Thornton cruised past Stephen Bunting.
Former World Youth champion Dimitri Van den Bergh was left feeling happy after accounting for Chris Dobey, Jonny Clayton quashed Danny Noppert’s high hopes to reach the last 16, whilst Gabriel Clemens’s ‘Wonderwall’ clinched over 60% of the votes against Ron Meulenkamp.
The Walk-on-World Cup is contested purely through social media polls and tournament odds are available exclusively at Unibet. We’re now down to the last 16 stage, which kicks off on Monday afternoon.